Monday, December 29

A story about "What Makes You Not a Buddhist"

Since I stopped going to church in the 90s I have struggled with defining my spirituality. No that’s not it. I understand and know where I stand, for the most part, spiritually but I have struggled with defining my spiritual affiliation.

I believe my main reason for not attaching myself is some weird reticence to belonging to a community of believers. I don’t know if its arrogance or selfishness but I just can’t get over this hurdle.

I picked up this book to see if I was really missing anything. Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse explores the trappings of being a follower or believer. As I read it, he says if you are caught up in what it means to be a Buddhist you are not one. Emptiness is the way; meaning you have to go beyond the I am/am not duality.

He is a contemporary person, not much older than me, so he uses examples and anecdotes that apply to today’s world without sounding like he is apart from it (I get this feeling from some of the writings of HH Dalai Lama). I like his writing and I appreciate his attempt to say get over it. Will it change my situation? I don’t know yet.

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